Read North American Indian Costumes Vol. 1 (text) text version

( 1564-1950)









NICE (France)







Copyright b C. Szwedzicki 1952 y


To Jeanne d'Ucel

My constant companion throughout the Y e a r s on the long trail to t h e " Land of the West" Without her h e l p and encouragement, this b o o k would not exist.


painted the plates illustrating this volume, under the direction of the author, is a distinguished Sioux artist (see "Les Peintres Indiens d'Amérique" Editions d'Art, C. Swedzicki, 1 9 5 0 ). He has several murals to his credit. His watercolors have been widely exhibited, and won First Prize in the 1947 American Indian artists exhibit, in the Philbrook Art Center, Tulsa, Oklahoma.


SCAR HOWE (Nazuha Hokshina, Trader Boy) who



At the time of the European invasion, most of the people inhabiting the country north of Mexico wore clothes, except i n the warm regions of the south and along the Pacific coast, where semi-nudity prevailed. The soft tanned skins of deer, antelope, and elk generally constituted the material for the clothing of the Indians, in the greater part of what is now the United States and Canada. Dressed fur skins and the pelts of birds sewed together were used by the Eskimos and some Indian tribes. The Alaska Indians also used fish, seal and walrus skins. The hides of the buffalo were made into robes by die Plains tribes; but the leather as was too stiff for general use. Elk and moose skin was soft but too thick. Bark, hair, fur, mountain sheep wool, and feathers were made into fabrics in the northwest Pacific and in the Pueblo country. Cotton was raised and woven into garments by the Hopis from very ancient times. Thread was secured from tendons or fibers of plants like the agave. Awls made of bone were the most common sewing instruments; the Indians could make needles, also of bone, but appear to have used them infrequently. Both men and women could and did sew. In fact, men often made their own clothes. Men wore tanned buckskin shirts, breech cloths and leggings tied to a belt or waist strap. The shirt hung free from the hips. It had sleeves and was drawn over the head. The women's dress generally reached a little below the knee. It was made of two skins, the top of which was folded back for several inches, to form a sort of loose collar that extended over the shoulders and the upper arm; there was no true sleeve. A belt held the dress at the waist. A robe of skin or woven fabric was worn in cold weather, also robes of feathers. Later blankets took the place of robes.

Costumes differed in different tribes in cut, also in color and especially in ornamentation. The free edges were generally fringed, and sleeves with very long fringes were found among the Plains tribes. Shirts and leggings were decorated with paint, porcupine quills, and beadwork embroidery. Locks of ha ir, either human or equine, tails of animals, claws, shells -- all these were used as ornaments and as charms. The Eskimos and Indians of Alaska wore fitted clothing in contrast with the loosely hung garments of other regions. The British Columbia tribes made twined robes or shawls of cedar bark or sage brush bark and fur. The Chilkats of the Northwest coast made beautiful blankets or robes of mountain goat wool woven over a warp of twisted wool and bark. Along the south Pacific Coast and the Mexican border, the women wore fringe-like skirts of bark cord and strung seeds around their loins, reminiscent of the grass skirts of the South Sea belles. In colder weather or on special occasions, a skin robe or cape was placed over the shoulders. A large robe of woven strips of rabbit skin was sometimes used. The ceremonial costumes of all tribes were more elaborate than those for ordinary wear. Moccasins and leggings were worn in most parts of the country, but in California and other warm regions, they were not common. The Apaches and Navajos used a high, boot-like moccasin. Along the Mexican border and in the Southwest, sandals similar to those of the ancient Cliff Dwellers were preferred. Hats, usually of basketry, were made by many Pacific coastal tribes. Mittens were worn in the far North. Belts of all kinds of materials and ornamentation were used on clothing to support pouches, bags, and implements. Bags and pouches were made of skin, usually as containers of pipe,


tobacco and paint. Weapons were ornamented with quill work or beads and slung from the shoulder. Necklaces, earrings, charms, bracelets of many kinds and materials formed part of the costume. Very soon after the coming of the Whites, the Indians greatly modified their costumes. They copied and simulated European dress and used traders' stuffs, as indicated in this work. Fashion changed with the years and decades. Much that is now considered Indian had a E u r o p e a n origin. In the domestic economy of the Indian, skins were his most valuable possession. Later they became his principal objects of trade. A list of articles made in whole or in part of skins includes nearly half of everything he owned. They were: tipi, parfleche boxes, feather boxes, bed covers, pillows, tobacco pouches, medicine bags, pemmican bags, pouding hides (for berries), saddle blankets, horse and dog harness; the bullboat of the Missouri, the kaiak of the Eskimos, fishing lines, nets; all clothing from robes and shirts to leggings and moccasins; shields, body a r m o u r , pictograph records, masks, a n d cradles. The method used for dressing the skins was pretty much the same everywhere north of Mexico, the difference being chiefly in the tools used and the amount of labor spent in preparation, with resulting difference in final quality. Among the Plains tribes, where the art is still practiced traditionally, the process consisted of six stages: fleshing, scraping, braining, stripping, graining, and w o r k i n g , for each of which a different tool is required. In fleshing, the hide is stak ed out on the ground, fleshy side up, and the fat is removed by scraping with a gouge with serrated edges, made from the leg bone of a large animal. (Now an iron instrument is used.) Next is scraping, a laborious process, with a short adzelike instrument consisting of a blade of stone or iron set at right angle to the handle made of wood or elk horn. The hide is staked out, this time with the hairy side up, padded with a bed of old sk in s to prevent tearing. The hair is saved for pillow filling. In the braining process, the skin is thoroughly anointed with a mixtu re of cooked brains and liver, grease and pounded yucca fiber, and some s a l t . A bundle of dried grass is laid in the center of the hide and saturated with hot water, after which the corners of the hide are brought together over it, bag fashion; the skin is tightly twisted into a solid ball, and hung up to soak overnight. The eastern Sioux dressed their buffalo skins in a concoction of oak bark. The Maricopas of Arizona use castor beans instead of brains and liver. For stripping, the dampened skin is opened out and twisted into a rope to expel as much moisture as possible, after which it is tightly stretched out at an angle of forty-five degrees in a frame of poles. The stripping is done with a broad bladed instrument about six inches wide set in a bone handle. This is drawn evenly from top to bottom of the skin, causing the water to ooze out; then the skin is left to dry and bleach until ready for graining. For this, a globular piece of bone is cut from the spongy portion of the humerus of the buffalo. The whole surface of the skin is rubbed with this bone as with sand paper to reduce it to desired thickness and even smoothness. Then comes the process of working, or softening the skin to make it pliable. This is done by drawing it see-saw f a s h i o n for a l o n g time across a s t r i p of leather stretched b e t w e e n two

trees. It is sometimes first drawn over a tree trunk after which it is cleaned with a wash of white chalk or clay that is rubbed off when dry. All people wish to appear attractive; the desire for personal adornment is as natural as the instinct for self-preservation. It probably has as its basis sex attraction, at least in part. Adornment seems also to have been used as a mark of individual, tribal, or ceremonial distinction among Indians. In using paint on their face, hair, and body, the Indians employed both color and design to express individual beliefs or clan beliefs, as well as to indicate their tribe or to proclaim an act of courage. Paint was always an integral part of ceremonies, both religious and secular. It was used in connection with gala dress. Both men and women painted themselves. (In a purely utilitarian manner, paint was used as a protection against sun and wind. It served also as means of concealment from the enemy.) Ear ornaments were a mark of family wealth, distinction or honor. Among some tribes, ears were perforated in many places along the outer edge to permit the wearing of several ornaments. Pendants were made of shell, metal or bone. Labrets were worn by Indians of the North Pacific Coast and the Gulf Coast. Among the inland tribes, the earlier designs for porcupine quillwork were later worked in beads of European make. Feathers were widely used to decorate robes and clothing of warriors and distinguished people. The ancient Cliff Dwellers of New Mexico and Arizona wove feathers into mantles, reminiscent of those of Central America. The Indian women of the Plains fastened the milk teeth of the elk in rows on their garments. These teeth were considered as perhaps the most valuable form of decoration. Head bands, armlets, bracelets, belts, necklaces, and garters of buckskin, woven fiber, or metal were useful, but they also had decorative value. They were often symbolic. Wampum belts were used in official treaties and transactions between early settlers and the eastern tribes, and between tribes. As a m a r k of distinction, the important men of the Plains wore necklaces made of bears' claws. The head-dress varied greatly in different parts of the country and was generally significant of a man's office, rank, totem, or kinship. The same was true of the design in the ornament on his shield. In the Southwest, blankets with woven designs in colors were used in ceremonies. White robes with broad belts were worn at marriages. One of the most remarkable examples of weaving was the ceremonial blanket or cloak of the Chilkats of Alaska. The elaborate design covers the entire space within the borders. Th e f o r m s are totemic. In the buffalo country, the women seldom ornamented their own robes but embroidered those of their men. Sometimes the man painted his robe with a design inspired by a dream. Often the design was a pictorial record of his deeds, or of important events in the history of his tribe. The manner in which the robe was worn indicated the man's emotion joy, sorrow and so forth. Each tribe had a different cut of moccasin, so that a man's tribe was proclaimed by his footwear, and even by his footprint. The war shirt was frequently painted to represent a prayer; it carried a design on the back for protection against surprise attack and one on the chest for victory. The shirts were often decorated with human hair contributed by female relatives. Contrary to common belief, they rarely displayed hair war trophies or scalps.


The ceremonial clothes of the Pueblos of the Southwest, of the Plains tribes and of the fisher folk of the Pacific Coast , were full of ornamentation which, either in design or in material , suggested past experiences or rites. They served as records that kept alive the beliefs a nd the history of the people. The horses of the Plains' warriors were often ornamented to indicate the dreams or war experiences of their riders. . The tribes varied greatly in their fondness for and u se of ornamentation. There were dandies among the Indians as well as among the Whites, who liked to strut their good looks and finery before admiring maidens. Bi rd feathers played a large role in the Indian's clothing and ornaments, and in his paraphernalia for war and worship. Feathers of most birds were used but some were considered more precious than others. The wild turkey's feathers were preferred by the tribes in the eastern Woodlands; the crow's and flicker's on the Pacific Coast; the crest of the woodpecker, quail, jay and oriole were particularly valued in California; the hawk, eagle, turkey and parrot in the Pueblo region . The Indians of Virginia and the Pueblos captured eagles while young and kep t them in confinement until their feathers were needed. In the Arctic region, parkas made of the feathered skins of water fowl gave excellent protection against cold. Robes of the same material were quite common even further to the south . The Eastern tribes cut bird skins into strips and wove them into blankets, similar to the rabbit skin blankets of the Western tribes. Captain John Smith describes a robe of turkey feathers m u c h like the one s h o w n in Plate 3. Fans and other religious accessories were made of wings by the Eastern Iroquois. The California Indians wove small feathers or bird down into their beautiful baskets. Others used bird quills for a type of embroidery similar to the porcupine quill embroidery. Feathers were attached to the shaft of arrows to direct their flight. Some California tribes used bird scalps as money and a medium of exchange. The people of the Plains wore feathers in their hair to indicate rank and military honors, by the manner of mounting or notching these feathers. Feathers decorated the calumet (pipe). Their color indicated the purpose for which the pipe was offered. The most glorious use of feathers was in the war bonnets of the Plains tribes, of golden eagle feathers. The true war bonnet as we know it was given to the Indian world by the Sioux. Before the introduction of the horse, the tail of the bonnet rarely reached below the waist, but, after the warrior was mounted, it was lengthened to equ al the height of the wearer. The making of the war bonnet required a special ritual; it was accompanied by songs and ceremonies by the warriors of the tribe. A bonnet could not be made without the consent of the warriors, for it stood as a record of tribal valor and bravery as well as a distinction granted to a man by his fellow tribesmen. The war bonnet was never worn by wo me n . The Pueblos had many uses for feathers and down in worship, such as prayer sticks, altar decorations and wands. The down feather was for the Indian a symbol joining mortal existence with the spirit world. In the myths of creation, feathers often played an important role. The manner in which the Indians dressed their hair often suggested nick-names by which they were called by neighbouring tribes. As an example of this, the Pawnees were called "Pariki" (h o r n ) because they c u t their hair close to the head except for a narrow ridge from the forehead to the crown, where the scalp lock was stiffened with fat and paint and arranged to stand erect like a cu rved ho rn.

The Dakotas and other western tribes parted the hair in the middle from the forehead to the nape of the neck and plaited it in two long braids, wrapped in beaver or otter skins, which were worn hanging down in front of t h e chest. The p a r t e d line, usually painted red, was broken by the circle that separated the scalp lock which was always carefully plaited into a separate s mall switch. The Nez Perces of Idaho and their neighbours formerly wore their hair long and let it fall loosely over the back and shoulders. In the Southwest, most of the Pueblo men cut their hair short across the forehead like the modern "bang" a n d knotted it into a club behind. In some tribes, the women changed their hair mode after marriage. The Hopi girls are a typical example of this: they arranged their hair in a large whorl over each ear as a symbol of the squash blossom, but after marriage, w o r e it in two simp le braids. In olden times, the manner of wearing the hair did not depend on personal fancy or the fashion of the tribe, but was representative of tribal kinship and beliefs. There were also styles dictated by religious and shamanistic demands. Among the Omahas, for instance, children from four to seven years of age had their hair cut to indicate the totem of their family. If the totem was a turtle, all the hair was cut off close except for a short fringe encircling the head in a manner to suggest the form of a turtle with head, tail and feet A m o n g most tribes, the hair was believed to be closely and mysteriously connected with a person's life and fortune. The first cutting of the child's hair was usually attented with religious rites. One could be bewitched by an enemy who had possession of a bit of his hair; consequently cuttings and combings were carefully burned. One might almost say that the scalp lock was the essence of the hair and of life; that is why it had such importance in a religious and in a social meaning. For anyone to touch it lightly was regarded as a grave insult. As a war trophy, the scalp lock had a double meaning. It indicated the act of a supernatural power that had decreed the death of the man, and it served as a tangible proof of the warrior's bravery and skill in wresting it from the enemy. The scalper, however, was not always the killer or even the first to strike the enemy. Honors were frequendy divided between the one who killed and the one who was first to "strike coup". The spirit of the slain enemy was believed to linger near his severed scalp until a great death feast was held, when the lock was destroyed and the spirit released from all earthly ties. Personal happiness or grief was indicated in the dressing of the hair. Young men spent much time arranging and combing their hair, even employing their friends to assist in the dressing. A brush of stiff spear grass was used for combing and a pointed stick for parting and painting, both of which were carefully kept in an embroidered case when not in use. Perfumes and oil were added, and wisps of sweet grass were concealed in the hair to add to its attractions. Ornaments were worn in the hair as tokens of honor and achievements. T he southwest Pimas and Papagos stained their hair when it became bleached in the Arizona sun. Some tribes completely covered the hair with river mud or clay, but this was usually in order to destroy vermin. Among the Pueblos, washing the hair with a soap of the root of yucca plant before a religious performance was attended with much ceremony, as was the purification practice in the sweat lodge, which always preceded sacred rites among the Plains tribes. False hair was worn by the Crows, Assiniboins, Mandans and Yumas. Ceremonial wigs of black wool and bangs of horse hair were worn by the Pueblos. On the other hand, most Indians carefully plucked all hair from their face a n d body.



1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 TIMUCUA, FLORIDA - 1564 SECOTA, VIRGINIA - 1 5 9 0 POWHATAN - 1607 POCAHONTAS IN ENGLISH COURT DRESS - 1616 MAHICA N - 1650 COCOPA (Yuma) - 1700 SENECA - 1700 MOHAWK CHIEF - 1750 IROQUOIS - 1776 SAUK CHIEF - 1780 CHEROKEE - 1 7 9 0 MOHAVE - 1 8 0 0 CLAYOQUOT- NOOTKA - 1800 CROW WOMAN - 1804 SEMINOLE CHIEF - 1 8 1 0 CREEK - 1812 OJIBWAY CHIEF - 1820 MANDAN - 1832 IOWA - 1840 PAPAGO - 1850 OJIBWAY GIRL - 1850 YUROK - 1850 BLACKFOOT - 1850 CHEYENNE WARRIOR - 1860 PAWNEE SCOUT - 1860






of the neck, to which two or three feathers were often fastened. Medicine men shaved the whole head except for the roach, and they wore a stuffed bird over th e e a r as a badge of office. Elaborate tattooing covered body, arms and legs, and even cheeks of both men and women. Much jewelry was worn. Necklaces of pearls, shells, bone, or copper beads were used. Special copper ornaments were fastened to the chief's necklace. They also used many ear pendants and bracelets. Large copper disks hung from a belt at the waist. Thomas Heriot, a friend of Sir Walter Raleigh, in a report on this new land of Virginia, describes the people as beautiful, the towns orderly, and the gardens of corn, pumpkins and tobacco well kept. He reports: "God has made these savages a wonderful industrious people, although they are simple and rough. To speak truly, I cannot remember that I have ever seen a better or gentler folk than these". (S. Lorant, "The New World".)

The earliest recorded description we have of Indians on the Atlantic sea-board comes from Jean Ribaut who commanded a French expedition to Florida in 1562, and from the drawings and sketches o f his compatriot, Le Moyne. The French landed at the present site of St Augustine where they found the Timucuas (Thim-agoas) who are now extinct. They were "all naked and of goodly stature, mighty fair, and well shapen and proportioned of body as any people in all the world, very genteel, courteous and of good nature"*. They raised some crops, though they subsisted mostly on oysters and fish, with wild berries and roots. They lived in round thatched houses in stockaded villages. The men wore only a breech cloth of tanned skin; when working in their fields, they went naked. The chiefs and important men were dressed in deerskin painted or decorated in several colors. They wore small tinkling gold or silver disks or balls hanging from a belt. They also had large round disks or breast plates of metal, usually of copper, on the chest and back as armour in battle. They wore their hair in a top knot ornamented with one or more tails of raccoons or other animals, or some bird feathers. The women wore sashes or kilts of twisted Spanish moss. This contraption was tied around the waist or hung from one shoulder and did not conceal much of the body. Young girls usually wore an apron skirt of silky Spanish moss. Both men and women used as ear ornaments small shells or inflated fish bladders that shone like pearls, or, when dyed red, like rubies. They had many varieties of necklaces, bracelets, anklets, etc. They obtained the appearance of clothing by means of complicated tattooed designs on their face and body.




The Powhatans were a confederacy of the Algonquian tribes in Virginia. Their territory included the tidewoter section, from the Potomcc River to Albemarle Sound, and stretched into the interior as far as Richmond. They also occupied some territory around Chesapeake Bay. The Powhatans seem to have been related to the Delewares in speech. When they first came into notice by the Whites, they occupied some two hundred villages, one hundred sixty of which are listed by John Smith. In 1570, the Spaniards established Jesuit missions among them; but little was known about them until 1607 when the English settlers founded Jamestown. They were a friendly people until driven to warfare by the extortions of the Whites. The marriage of Pocahontas to John Rolphe brought peace until the death of the old chief, her father, in 1618. Later, under Chief Opechancanough, they waged bitter war against the English with some success. In 1622, most of the English settlers outside Jamestown were killed. The English ordered a war of extermination which continued for fourteen years, until both sides were exhausted. Peace was made in 1636 and lasted until 1641 when the Indians again tried to stem the encroachments of the English. These Virginia tribes are now absorbed into other groups. The important men and chiefs frequently made cloaks from the feathers of birds. The Powhatans cut their hair on the right side so that it would not hinder the bow string when they drew to shoot. Some of their priests wore a beard, a rare thing among Indians who carefully plucked their face clean. Tattooing was practised to some extent, especially by the women who were scantily clothed. Like their neighbours, these Indians wore many ornaments




The Secotas, a tribe belonging to the Algonquian family, first came into notice by the English in 1584. They were then living between Albemarle Sound and the Pamilco River, in North Carolina. Their settlements were small and situated near the sea coast. Most of them contained less than twenty houses. These were oblong and constructed of a frame work of poles set in the ground and lashed with cross pieces. The roof was curved and covered with bark or rush mats. The people were well advanced in agriculture, raising corn of several varieties, beans, peas, melons, pumpkins, and gourds. They were expert fishermen with spears or nets made of reeds. John White, the grandfather of Virginia Dare, sent to America by Sir Walter Raleigh, states that these Indians were dressed in loose mantles of deer skin in winter, and fringed aprons reaching below the knees in summer. The men wore this apron in front only, while the women had an additional one in back. Young girls wore a sort of girdle or G-string padded with moss. They went bare-foot. Older men wore a large, fringed, furred skin as a cloak or mantle . This garment was tied above the left shoulder and was long enough to reach below the knees. The hair of the women was cut in front and drawn to the back where it was tied in a knot. The Secota men cut their hair close at the sides of their head, leaving a crest from the forehead to the back (*) S. Lorant "The New World".




Pocahontas is a word used by the Chippewas for a person who dislikes to work and prefers to spend his or her time in frivolous amusements. The historical Pocahontas was the daughter of Powhaton, the famous chief of some Virginia tribes, 1599-1617. Her real


n a m e was Matoaka, which seems to mean "to a m u s e one's s e l f " . It was probably her innate fondness for playthings and frolicsome a mu s e me n t that gave her this name, as well as the expression "Pocah o n t a s " used by her father in speaking of her. Because of her alleged romance. Pocahontas is the most famous of Indian women. While still a young girl, she saved Captain John Smith from death when he was a prisoner of Powhaton's people. What is truth and fiction about her will probably never be known. Some savants have even cast doubt on the Smith affair. After his departure for England in 1609, the English adventurers did not keep faith with the Indians as promised; Pocahontas was treacherously decoyed on board the ship of Captain Argall and carried off to Jamestown (1612). Afterwards, she was taken to Powhaton's place where a truce with ransom was effected While she was among the English, Pocahontas became acquainted with John Rolfe, "an honest gentleman of good behaviour". The two were supposed to have fallen in love and, in April 1613, they were duly married, the girl having previously been baptized and given the name of Lady Rebecca. The alliance was profitable for the English, as Powhaton kept peace with them until his death. In 1616, Mr. and Mrs. Rolfe, with several Indians, accompanied Sir Thomas Dale to England, where the young Indian girl was received as a princess. While on board ship at Gravesend, ready to return to Virginia with her husband, she fell ill with smallpox and died at the age of about twenty-one. She left a son, Thomas Rolfe, who eventually went to Virginia where he became distinguished and wealthy; he was the founder of the famous Randolph family. The painting here presented is based upon a portrait done while she was in England, that is still in existence. She appeared at court dressed in the European fashion of the time, carrying a fan of three ostrich plumes, a symbol of royalty.




The Cocopas are a division of the Yuma family which, in 1604, lived on the lower Colorado River. At a somewhat later period, their habitation extended into Lower California in Mexico. Fray Francisco Garces estimated their number at about 3.000 in 1775; the tribe has now dwindled to a few hundred. The Cocopas were a friendly and peaceful people, though when attacked, they fought courageously. They are somewhat inferior to the Yumas in dress, arms, and customs. They were farmers, subsisting chiefly on corn, melons, pumpkins, beans, plus native grass, seeds, roots, and mesquite beans. Their houses were simple brush arbors in summer, wattle huts plastered with mud in winter. Polygamy existed among them. They cremated their dead. The climate favored nudity. The men originally wore only a breech cloth and not always that, while the women were content with a short kilt made of strips of bark. They wore their hair long and kept in place with sticky mud. They sometimes painted their faces black and red. Not many ornaments were worn. The men were fairly tall a n d well formed, the women inclined to portliness.







T h e Senecas were a large and very influential tribe of th e Iroquois Federation. When first known, they occupied part of western New York state between the lake that now bears their name and t h e Geneva River. They had their Council Fire at Tsononton, near N a p l e s , New York. About 1700, the Senecas and other Iroquois people extended their settlements westward to Lake Erie and southward into Pennsylvania. For some time, they were the largest tribe of t h e Iroquois League, due to their custom of adopting conquered peoples. The earliest estimate we have in 1660 gave them 5.000 people. In 1796, they had been reduced to 1.700. At the beginning of the 20th Century, they numbered about 3.000. Some of their descendants are on the Alleghany Reservation, New York; some remained under British rule after the War of Independence; they live on the Grand River Reservation, Ontario. The history of the Senecas is largely that of the League of the Iroquois, although they sometimes acted independently in dealing with allies or enemies. In 1622, the Algonquins and Hurons tried to secure peace with the Iroquois because they were exhausted by half a century of warfare. An armistice was concluded in 1624 but was soon broken. In 1627, the Iroquois, including the Senecas, declared war on the French and their Indian allies on the St. Lawrence River. In 1687, the Marquis Denonville assembled a great army of Indians from the Upper Lake regions to serve as an auxiliary force to the small French contingent, these to be employed in destroying the Senecas, but they held their own. By 1744, they were friendly to the French and resented the taking of Canada by the English. In 1655, Fathers Chaumonot and Dablon established missions among them by invitation; there were few conversions. In common with all other Iroquois, these people wore the usual breech cloth of soft skin, fringed leggings, beaded moccasins and a mantle; they shaved their heads leaving a roach in the center. They were early equipped with European made tomahawks and other weapons, and their costume soon acquired many elements of European manufacture.

The n a m e Mahican has been loosely applied to all Indians from the Hudson River to Narraganset Bay. It should really be limited to two tribes, the Mohegans of lower Connecticutt and the Mahicans of the Hudson River. They were an Algonquian people who occupied forty villages on both banks of the Hudson River, almost to Lake Champlain, and as far east as Massachussetts. The Dutch of New Amsterdam called them River Indians, while the French named them Loups (wolves) and classified them with the Delawares. As the Whites encroached, the Mahicans lost their territory piecemeal, and, in 1730, a large body of them emigrated to Pennsylvania. Later they moved with the Delawares to Ohio, finally losing their identity. The Mahicans were well built fighting men. Accomplished in military arts, they used stratagems to deceive their enemies. They often attacked under cover of darkness. Their women were very fond or ornaments. All wore around the waist a girdle made of the fin of a whale or of "sewant" (shell beads) holding a skin or cloth skirt. Under this, they wore next to the body a dress of deerskin reaching below the knees, the lower part of which was ornamented with fringe and often decorated with wampum. They bound their hair behind. When they dressed for special occasions, they wore a bead embroidered head band. Originally, the men wore a breech cloth made of skin, but after the coming of the Dutch, those who could obtain it "wore as a substitute a lap of duffel cloth half an ell broad and nine quarters long" which they pulled between their legs as a breech cloth and drew up in a f o l d w i t h a f l a p a t e a c h e n d h a n g i n g d o w n i n f r o n t a n d r e a r . They had mantles of feather, and later decked themselves with plaid cloth in the form of a sash thrown over the right shoulder and knotted over the left hip. The young men wore a head band of deer hair dyed scarlet. Various ornaments hung from their necklaces. They wore bracelets, anklets, ear pendants, etc. Men and women had moccasins embroidered with flower designs.




T h e Mohawks were t h e most easterly tribe in the Iroquois Federation of New York state. In 1603, Champlain heard of them and their country; six years later he had a skirmish with them. It w a s mentioned that, at that time, they wore arrow-proof armour and us ed stone and steel hatchets as implements of war. They had a g r e a t reputation for cruelty towards their prisoners, and they sometimes ate these prisoners. In 1642, Father Isaac Jogues and some companions


were captured by the Mohawks, and underwent cruel torture, but Jogues managed to escape a year later. The brave man returned to them in 1646, in an attempt to convert them to Christianity and to confirm the peace that had been made with them. A mission was established but was not successful, and the priest was eventually put to death by the Mohawks who accused him of inflicting sickness on them by sorcery. The Mohawks were the first in their region to acquire firearms. The Dutch furnished them with guns in exchange for beaver skins and captives. After that, it became easier for the Mohawks to conquer their enemies, though the tribe was actually not large. They proceeded to subjugate the Delawares and others, and eventually were the dominating power from the Mississippi River to the shores of Hudson's Bay. Owing to the geographical position of the tribe, it suffered more in the so-called French and Indian wars than any other Iroquois. At the beginning of the American Revolution, the Mohawk remained allies of the British, and at the end of hostilities, a large percentage of them went to Canada, where they have since lived on land granted them by the British Government. In 1650, the estimated population of the Mohawks was 5.000. Ten years later, it was 2.500. After that, their n u m b e r s declined rapidly. Like all other northeast woodland peoples, the Mohawks originally wore the breech cloth, a shirt and leggings of deerskin. The women usually wore a shirt and skirt. All were more or less ornamented with quills or painted designs. The men wore the hair roach, or a turban of soft fur. Men and women had moccasins with soft soles. Since the 19th century the Mohawks use shirts and trousers manufactured in Europe, which they adorn with glass beads and ribbon trimmings. The chief Mohawk (PI. 8) has already acquired from the whites cloth for his coat and tunic, as well as his gun and powder flask. His moccasins, belt, head wear and the rest of his original dress have equally undergone a change.

The Dutch supplied them with firearms, after which these nations extended their conquest to all the neighbouring tribes, until their dominion extended from Ottawa to Tennessee, and from Kennebec to Lake Michigan. The Iroquois were always firm allies of the English. At the outbreak of the American Revolution, the League of the Iroquois decided not to take part in the conflict, but to allow each nation or tribe to decide for itself its course of action. Most of them joined the English. After the conclusion of the war, the Mohawks and Cayugas were settled in Ontario, Canada, where they still live. All the Iroquois in the United States are on reservations in New York state, with the exception of the Oneidas who are in Wisconsin. Their population in 1689 was estimated at 13000, but in the next ten years they lost about half of their number. In 1930, the population of all the Iroquois in the United States was 7245. They are still increasing. The clothing worn by the Chief in Plate 9 shows evidence of contact with the Whites. Most of the eastern Indians abandoned skins for clothing acquired from the traders, from which they designed interesting garments that we now think of as "Indian", but that bear little resemblance to their original costume.




The Sauk is an Algonquian tribe whose earliest known country was the eastern peninsula of Michigan. The name "Saginaw Bay" seems to be derived from Sauk. Champlain, in 1616, is the first to refer to the Sauk but under the name of "people of the fire". They were first mentioned as an independent nation in the Jesuit Relations for 1640. Father Allouez was the first person to describe the Sauk. In 1667 he wrote that they were more savage than all the other people he had met. Yet it was among these "Ousaki" that he first began to give religious instruction at des Peres Rapids, Wisconsin, two years later. With the Fox, the Sauk attacked the French and Indian alfies in 1733, which resulted in the removal of the Sauk and Fox from W i s c o n s in to th e l a n d o f I o w a . F r o m t h e n o n , th e t w o tr ib e s b e c a m e known as Sauk and Fox. In 1770 the Spanish authorities had d i p l o matic contact with these people and tried to wean them away f ro m the English. Peter Pond in 1773 mentions that the Sauk made raiding excursions clear to Sante Fe for Spanish horses. He also m e n t i o n s that they (the men) "are not verey gellos of thare women. In G e n e r a l the Women find means to Grattafy them Selves without C o n s e n t of the Men". One band of Sauk had for some time been in the habit of wintering near St. Louis, the trading post on the Missouri River. In 1804 some of the head men made treaties that led to their undoing. They were to relinquish all claim to their territory in Wisconsin, Illinois, and Missouri. Out of this unfortunate treaty was to come the socalled Black-Hawk war in 1832. In 1837 the Sauk and Fox settled in Kansas, where they remained as one people until .1867 when they were moved to Indian Territory. The Sauk were entirely an eastern woodland people, using the canoe while living near the Great Lakes. They farmed on an extensive scale, raising corn, beans, pumpkins, tobacco, etc. They did much hunting and fishing. They lived in bark houses in summer and reed lodges in winter. Marriage was restricted to men and women of different gentes. Girls were paid formal courtship before marriage. The religion of the Sauk revolved around Manito. The word "Manito" signifies spirit : good, bad, god, devil, or guardian. Their world was permeated by magic forces, neither particularly benevolent nor malicious. They observed many religious and social ceremonies, some of which are still retained; the most important is that of the Midewiwin, or Society of Medicine Men. The Sauk and Fox now number about 1.200. Some are still in Iowa and a few in Kansas. The costume here illustrated is that worn by the chiefs in 1780 at about the time they made contact with the French and Spanish in St. Louis.




The Iroquois Confederation was originally composed of the Mohawks, Oneidas, Onondagas, Cayugas, Senecas, and, after 1722, the Tuscaroras; later still of the remnants of a dozen other tribes. Its purpose was to secure and maintain peace and welfare among these Indians whose cultures were similar. It was formed about 1570 as a result of wars with the Algonquins and Hurons. Jacques Cartier was probably the first man to encounter people of the Iroquois stock on the Gaspe Peninsula, in Canada, in 1534. The Iroquois of American history occupied all the St. Lawrence Valley, the Erie and Ontario Basin, New York State, except the lower Hudson Valley, Pennsylvania and the shores of Chesapeake Bay in Maryland. In the south, the Cherokees lived in eastern Tennessee and the mountainous parts of Virginia, Alabama, and the Carolinas. The people of the first "Five Nations" of the Confederation were the most advanced in political organization, statecraft, and military skill, of all Indians north of Mexico. Their chiefs or officers were as skilful diplomats as the French and English statesmen with whom they c o m p e t e d . In war, they were ferociously cruel to captives, and generally had a bad reputation among the colonists. As a people, however, they were kindly and affectionate, sympathetic to friends, helpful to kin in distress, kind to their women whose position was high in the tribe, and exceedingly fond of children. Their cruel wars were waged to protect their independence and institutions. The Iroquois were sedentary farmers, depending on the hunt only for a small part of their subsistence. The northern tribes were especially noted for their skill in building fortifications and houses. Their so-called castles were of solid log construction with platforms running around the top of the castle which served as an aid in defense.





They did not make clothes with skins, but they used the inner bark of the willow and vegetable fibers in making their few garments. In olden times, their women wore no clothing above the waist and k e p t their hair loose and untidy. Plate 12 represents a Mohave dandy in all his ancient painted splendour, before they adopted articles of white men's apparel.

The Cherokees are a large and distinguished Indian nation who formerly lived in the whole mountain region of the southern Alleghanies, in Virginia, North and South Carolina, Georgia, Eastern Tennessee and northern Alabama, when they were first encountered by de Soto in 1540. In 1736 the Jesuits established the first mission among them. Wars with the English colonists began in earnest in 1759, after difficulties dating from 1700. During the Revolution, they favored the English and continued hostilities until 1794. Shortly after 1800, educational work was established among them and, by 1820, they had made rapid progress towards white civilization, even adopting a government patterned after that of the United States. They were good farmers, living in well established villages. Tired of the everlasting encroachments of the Whites, many of the Cherokees went west across the Mississippi and made new homes for themselves in what is now Arkansas. By this time, large numbers were already of mixed blood, among them Sequoyah, the inventor of the Cherokee alphabet. Soon a calamity overtook these fine people. Gold was discovered at Dalhonega, Georgia, within the Cherokee nation, and the pressure of the Whites to secure their land began in all its fury. After years of hopeless struggle, under the leadership of Chief John Ross, they were finally compelled to submit to the rapacious Whites. In the forced treaty of 1835 they agreed to sell their holdings and move beyond the Mississippi River to a region that was to be Indian Territory for all time. The forced removal was made in the dead of winter in 1838-1839. A quarter of their number died from hardships or exposure during the long journey on foot. In Indian Territory they re-organized their government, made Tahlequah their capital, and accepted on equal terms the earlier Cherokee settlers. Some of them went into Texas where they obtained a grant of land from the Mexican government. The Texan revolutionists refused to recognize their prior rights to the land, attacked, killed and expelled the remainder from the state in 1839. All the Cherokees were not removed from the east. Several hundred escaped and found refuge in the mountains, where they led a precarious existence until 1842 when they secured legal permission to remain. These are now called the Eastern Cherokees, and are located in Swayne and Jackson Counties, North Carolina. In 1906, the Cherokee Nation came to an end. The land was divided among the people who became citizens of the United States. In 1729 they were estimated at 20.000. In 1900 they numbered nearly 30.000, including all degrees of mixtures. They have given to Oklahoma some of her most prominent citizens.




The Clayoquots live in Meares Island and at Tofino Inlet, Vancouver Island. They are a tribe of Nootka people, found from the west coast of Vancouver Island to Cape Flattery, Washington; all speak a similar language. Their culture is very similar to that of the Salish on the south and the Haidas on the north. Juan de Fuca was probably the first white man to see them. English and American trading ships frequently touqhed their villages, to take valuable cargoes of furs. Between 1792 and 1794, Captain George Vancouver visited them and bestowed his name on the island. The Hudson's Bay Company established a post at Victoria in 1843 and, from that time, their relations with the Whites became more friendly and intimate. The coming of the Whites brought epidemics that have caused a great decrease in their numbers. Slavery was practiced, and intertribal warfare prevailed among them. The Potlatch was one of the great institutions. Around it centered much of the social life. Most of the Nootkas have been converted to the Catholic faith. They were famous for their good baskets. They did considerable wood carving but they were not as skilful as the Haidas in this art. They built large houses of cedar beams and horizontal planks on the beaches, facing the sea. Each of these long houses accommodated several families. The large seagoing canoe was their most important specialty. They were splendid mariners. They, and a few neighbouring tribes in Washington, were the only Indians who dared the open sea to pursue the whale. They depended mostly on fish for their diet but hunted land and sea animals, roots and berries. Every family owned its own fishing location and salmon creeks. Both men and women had cedar bark or fur robes fastened together at the right side. Women wore in addition, woven bark aprons extending from the waist to the knees. In rainy weather, bark capes, like ponchos, were worn. Both sexes used hats in rain or sunshine. Men wore their hair loose or twisted into a knot. Women had two braids down the back. Nowadays, these Indians wear white men's work clothes. Their necklaces, bracelets and labrets were made of seashells.








The Mohaves were the largest and most warlike of the Yuma tribes. Since first known, they have lived on both sides of the Colorado River, in Ca liforn ia and Arizona, near Needles. The Mohaves were a husky and athletic folk, and their women not unattractive. They early acquired fame for the elaborate painting of their bodies. Tattooing was universally practiced among them They made (and still make) a crudely decorated pottery. Though living on the river, they knew nothing of the canoe but, instead, used crude rafts made of bundles of river reeds. They preferred living in isolated dwellings of brush instead of towns. These shelters were of the simplest construction, four posts supporting a flat roof of brush covered with sand. Rarely were these shelters more than three or four feet high. The Mohaves were not great hunters. They relied on cultivated foods like corn and beans; they also picked the wild mesquite beans, pinon nuts, and caught a little fish and small desert rodents. Instead of irrigating their fields, they depended on the annual floods to supply moisture for their crops; they starved when the floods were insufficient.

The Crows are a Siouian tribe who were once a part of the Hidatsas, from whom they separated about 1776, as a result of a factional dispute between two chiefs and their followers. They were at that time living on the Missouri River. The band that became the Crows moved to the foot of the Rocky Mountains where they roved until placed on reservations. Since their separation from the Hidatsas, their story is similar to that of most tribes of the Plains, one of perpetual war with surrounding tribes. Their chief enemies were the Siksikas (Blackfeet) and the Dakotas. At the time of Lewis and Clark, they lived chiefly on the Bighorn River. By 1817, they were settled on the Yellowstone. In 1862, they were hunting at the sources of the Powder, Wind and Bighorn Rivers, and south as far as the Laramie fort on t h e Platte. Prince Maximilian mentions that the tipis of the Crows were set up without the regular order associated with the Plains Indian camps. Pieces of red cloth instead of scalps were floating like streamers in the wind. The camp was swarming with vicious dogs. The Crows at that time were nomads, following the game, and raised no crops except small patches of tobacco. They owned many horses and were expert horsemen. When attacking, they lowered themselves on the side of their horse, the back of which served them as a rampart. The Prince considered them the proudest of the Indians, despising all Whites, a n d plundering th e m a t every o p p o r t u n it y .


In looks, height and dress, they resembled the Hidatsas. They were especially proud of their long hair. The women were skilful in dressing skins, and their shirts, dresses of bighorn skin, and their buffalo robes were painted and embroidered with porcupine quills. According to Lewis and Clark, the population of the Crows was 3.500 in 1804. Maximilian counted "four hundred tipis". In 1904, they were reduced to 1.826, and in 1930, only 1.664; they are still decreasing. Plate 14 shows a Crow woman wearing a typical painted buffalo robe. Some of these robes had painted pictorial records of personal military achievements, others were painted with designs of a more abstract character.

The Creeks were a proud and haughty people, brave and gallant in war. The men were famous tor their great height, their well formed bodies, and their graceful movements. They loved adornment and decoration and were fond of music and games. Their great religious ceremony was the annual Puskita -- a sacred fire ritual. They held peace festivals in what they called their "white" towns, while their "red" towns were reserved for war ceremonies. They had Negro slaves, and e v e n t u a l l y many h a d mixed blood. At the time of their removal to Indian Territory, they numbered between 15.000 and 20.000. In Indian Territory, they were assigned three million two hundred thousand acres with the capitol at Okmulgee. They had a constitution and written laws. Plate No. 16 represents a Creek before the time of the C r e e k War. The white man's influence is already prevalent in design a n d in materials used.




The Seminoles belong to the Muskogean family. Originally classified with the Creeks, they have been known under their present name only since 1775. Their home was in Florida, long under Spanish rule. They became involved in war with the United States, first in 1812 and again in the First Seminole War of 1817-18. General Andrew Jackson invaded Florida and secured it for the United States in 1819. The Seminoles had to cede most of their holdings except a restricted reservation. White population pressure on their land resulted in their being ordered to move to the territory beyond the Mississippi, in 1832. A large part of the tribe refused to obey and prepared for resistance under the great Osceola. The Second Seminole War, begun in 1835, lasted for eight years; it resulted in the loss of 1.500 Americans and the removal of most of the tribe to Indian Territory. A number, however, fled to refuge to the Everglade Swamps, where they still live. Those who went to Oklahoma were organized into the Seminole Nation, as one of the "Five Civilized Tribes". This tribal nation came to an end in 1906 with the opening of its lands for settlement. They now number about 2.500 people, somewhat mixed with Negro blood. The Seminoles who are still living in the Everglade Swamps of Florida are estimated at about 300, and are in a state of culture much like that of a hundred and fifty years ago, except for their costumes. The Seminoles dressed very much like their neighbours and relatives, the Choctaws and Creeks. They used European cloth but embellished it with native decorative elements.





The Ojibways, or Chippewas, constitue one of the largest tribes north of Mexico, numbering about 23.000 at present. Linguistically, they belong to the Algonquian family. They were first encountered by the French at the Sault, in 1640, at which time they were at war with the Sioux over the wild rice fields. Having early secured firearms, they usually fared well in military action. In 1692 the French h a d already established trading posts among them. Except for a brief military encounter with the American Army, in which an officer and a dozen soldiers were killed and many wounded, they have been at peace with the Americans since the treaty of 1815. They now five on allotments in their original territory, in Michigan, Wisconsin, Minnesota, North Dakota, Montana, and in Ontario and Manitoba, Canada. They are a woodland people who prefer living near water. T h e y were experts in the use of the birch bark canoe and, during their e a r l y history, depended largely on fish for food. Many of their vessels and utensils were made of birch bark. They lived in coneshaped wigwams of bark and grass mats. Like most of the other tribes of the woodlands, they believed that a mysterious power dwelt in all objects, animate or inanimate. They believed in the Happy Land of the W e s t where the shades went after death. The dress of the Ojibways has undergone many changes since 1640 and even since 1820. Originally it was quite simple, made of. skins or woven skin strips sewn with animal sinew. In winter, men went about in leggings and robe. The women's costume was a skirt formed by folding a skin around the waist; it reached below the knees. On occasions, a jacket of skin was worn. Another typical garment was the sleeved coat or shirt reaching to midthigh and terminating in a point in front and behind. In winter, a hooded parka made of caribou fur was worn by both men and women. They were similar except that the women's reached a little below the knees. Traders' cloth was introduced early and often used instead of the original caribou skin. Embroidery with beads became the fashion among them. I t is sewed directly on skin or cloth, and the design is now floral a n d realistic. The Ojibways were fond of beautifully embroidered leg bands to hold up their knee-length, tight-fitting leggings. They often wore gorgeously embroidered aprons in front and back, instead of a breech cloth. Moccasins were made of moose skin and are still worn. In early times, they were not ornamented, but later were elaborately decorated with porcupine quills, beads, or dyed silk. Mittens of rabbit fur were worn. In early times, the men wore a turban of. skunk fur with three or four feathers set in attached tubes. Sometimes they added a roach of moose hair to the typical woodland cap. The younger women took great care of their hair, dressing it with bear fat. They were fond of jewelry and used bracelets, necklaces, and ear and nose rings of many kinds. The Chief (Plate .17) wears a costume m a d e from trade c l o t h .




The Creeks form the largest division of the Muskogean family. They originally claimed territory in Alabama and Georgia, from the Atlantic Ocean to the mountains, including some islands. At an early date, they sold to Great Britain large tracts of land and nearly all their islands. The early history of the Creeks is not known. De Soto mentions that a league of several towns existed among them in 1540, with a head chief presiding over all of them. For a hundred years before their removal to Oklahoma, the Creeks occupied fifty or more towns in which were spoken six distinct languages. This would indicate that they are a composite people. One of their sub-groups, the Hitchitis appears to have been the remnant of the ancient people of Georgia/commonly known as the Mound Builders. The Seminoles are an offshoot o f the Lower C r e e k s . The Creeks entered into American history as the allies of the English in the Apalachian Wars of 1703-08, and continued as staunch friends of the English colonists and hostile to the Spaniards of Florida. There was one serious revolt against Americans in 1813-14 known as the Creek War, in which General Andrew Jackson was active This conflict ended in disaster for the Indians. Their great leader, Weatherford, surrendered and the tribe lost nearly all its land in the United States. The Creeks were also involved in the Seminole War, which resulted in their removal to Indian Territory, in 1836-1840.





In religion, habits and customs, they differ little from the other Winnebago tribes. Like other Plains Indians who had built no immunity against it, they suffered heavy losses from smallpox brought into the country by the Whites. The Iowa costume illustrated here is made up of various elements of Indian and white origin. Indian chiefs took great pride in the large coins and medals presented them by white officials and they wore them as ornaments and as badges of honor.

The Mandans were a tribe of Sioux, living on the Missouri River in North Dakota. Our knowledge of their early history is very scanty. From their myths recorded by Lewis and Clark and by Prince Maximilian, we gather that at some remote time, they lived further to the East in the upper Lake region. In language, they seem related to the Winnebagos. They had not completely abandoned farming when first encountered by white men. The first recorded visit to them was that by Sieur de la Verendrye, in 1738, when they occupied some eight or nine villages on the Hart River. Having been reduced in strength by attacks from the Dakotas and Assiniboins, and by smallpox, the tribe occupied in 1776 only two villages situated on opposite sides of the Missouri River, below the mouth of the Knife River. Lewis and Clark wintered with them there. In 1837, the whole tribe was almost destroyed by smallpox. According to one report, only about 130 out of 1.600 people were left alive. In 1870, large tracts in North Dakota and Montana were set aside a s reservations for the Mandans and the Hidatsas. In the early part of the 19th century, the Mandans were a vigorous, tall, handsome, broad-shouldered and muscular people. Their noses were slender and not so arched as those of the Sioux. They did not have as high cheek-bones. The men were vain and paid greatest attention to their dress, especially the head dress. They sometimes wore at the back of the head a long ornament made of sticks fastened to the hair and reaching to the shoulders. These were covered with eagle feathers and porcupine quills dyed in many colors and arranged in a neat pattern. There was a great variety in ornamentation. Tattooing of breasts and arms was practiced to some extent. The rest of the costume for both men and women was made of beautifully tanned deer or elk skins. The Mandans lived in villages of circular, vaulted, clay-covered log houses, placed fairly close together. In olden times, these villages were surrounded by palisades of strong posts or logs. In the center of the house was a circular opening for -the smoke, over which was placed a screen of twigs. The interior was divided by parchment or stiff skins into cubicles large enough to serve as sleeping quarters for several people. They cultivated corn, beans, and the sunflower. They also made some pottery. The Mandans have always been friendly to the United States and to white people, and since 1866, a number of them have been in the United States army as scouts. Lewis and Clark estimated their number at 1.250. At the time of Maximilian's visit, from which period Plate 18 is designed, they were probably about 1.500. In 1850, there wery only 150 left alive. In 1930, they numbered 271 persons.




The Papagos are a Piman tribe whose original home was southeast of the Gila River, Arizona, extending into the desert wastes of Sonora, Mexico; it measures about a hundred and twenty miles from east to west. Like the Pimas, the Papagos were farmers who cultivated corn, beans, cotton, by means of irrigation. However, they also used desert plants like the mesquite beans for food; the saguaro fruit furnished them with syrup. They traded salt, selling it to other Indians and to Whites. At present, they grow wheat and barley, raise cattle, or work as laborers on the railroad. They are tall and very dark. Their customs and habits are similar to those of the Pimas. Their women were, and still are, expert basket makers, but their pottery is rather poor, both in quality and design. Their houses are domeshaped huts, twelve to sixteen feet in diameter, made of saplings and thatched straw. Sometimes the straw is covered with earth. The Papagos have a reputation for frugality and have always been a peace loving people, though they often had to repel attacks from the fierce Apaches. They now number about 5.000. Their costume was very simple, as they lived in a warm climate; it was derived from Mexican sources.








For description of Ojibway people, see Plate 17. The Plate, No. 21, shows an Ojibway girl in an unusual costume, little known among the Whites. It is a simple sleeveless garment that reached to the middle of the leg and was fastened over the shoulders with straps. The bottom of the dress was usually fringed. It hung loose and was held at the waist with a belt tied behind. The arms were covered to the wrist with open detached sleeves which were sometimes sewed about as far as the bend of the arm. From there, they were open and d r a w n up to the shoulders, and their corners fell down the back to the waist. The plate shows the girl wearing leggings of cloth décorated ith ribbon work and beads.

The lowas are now an almost extinct tribe. They belong to the Sioux family and probably sprang from the Winnebago linguistic branch of that family. They are closely related to the Otos, Missouris and Poncas. All seem to have come from their ancient home north of the Great Lakes. The lowas experienced many vicissitudes and wandered far afield, for they are reported in different localities by Father Andre in 1676, La Salle in 1682, Lewis and Clark in 1804, and others. Father Andre says that they were very poor, their greatest wealth consisting of "ox hides and red calumets". Their traditions place them for a time near the Red stone quarries in Minnesota, and they appear to have manufactured and traded peace pipes early. Le Sueur invited the neighbouring lowas to settle around Fort l'Huillier when he built it, in 1701, in Minnesota because they were industrious and accustomed to cultivate the earth. They also trapped and supplied the traders with skins of bear, deer, beaver, raccoon and otter. In 1824, they ceded their lands on the Missouri and later moved to Kansas, eventually settling on a reservation in Oklahoma.




The Yuroks live in northern California, along the Klamath River and on the neighbouring seacoast. Their villages nestle close to the river or the beaches and lagoons. Their traditions and myths are all related to their present environment, so they have lived there a very long time, if not always. Like all California Indians, they were peace loving and without military traditions. Their "wars" were usually private quarrels between themselves or with other tribes, in which an antagonist was


helped by his village. At the conclusion of hostilities, they paid for the men they had killed and the property they had destroyed. Except by some white trapper or adventurer, they were entirely unknown a hundred years ago. When the gold rush brought Americans on the scene, they found the Yuroks friendly and peaceful, although some hostilities developed between miners and a few Yurok villages. A reservation on the Klamath was assigned to them in 1855. Now they live on individual allotments. They have managed to subsist by their own efforts. They have decreased in number from around 2.700, in 1870, to little more than 500. They are taller than most of. the other California Indians and differ from them in many respects. They had no chieftain; wealth was the yardstick of a family or a man's standing, and was the goal of all their efforts; they used as currency woodpecker scalps, shells and obsidian. Marriage was simply a property transaction. They had some interesting ceremonials like the Deer Skin and the Woodpecker Dances. They were perhaps the most skilful basket makers in America. Their seagoing canoes, made of redwood, were about twenty feet in length with both ends cut square. They lived in large square houses, built of split and dressed planks, and set around a square pit. These houses had gabled roofs; they measured eighteen to twenty-five feet in width and six feet high at the peak. The Yuroks subsisted on seafood a n d on salmon and lamprey. They also ate acorns. The dress of the men consisted of a deerskin breech cloth and deerskin moccasins with elk soles; leggings were worn when hunting. Fur robes were used over the shoulders in cold weather. The women's dress was a knee-length skirt of skin, open at the front, where it revealed a fringed apron consisting of strung pine nut shells, with ornamentation of grass and abalone shells. A bowl-shaped basket cap was commonly worn. Both men and women parted their hair in the middle and allowed it to hang down in two braids in front of the shoulders, but the men sometimes arranged theirs in a single rope hanging behind. Some wore ear pendants, either of abalone shell or dentalia, with red woodpecker feathers on the end. Most women had tattooed lines on their chin. The head dress in Plate 22 is made of deerskin and woodpecker crests.

shirts and leggings, breech cloths and robes, magnificently decorated with beads and fringe. The shirts had sleeves and the sides were tied in two or three places. The leggings were hip-length and held up by thongs to the belt. Shirts and leggings were often trimmed with human hair, and with quillwork or beads. Shoes were made of buffalo or elk hides. Fur caps made from whole skins were used in winter. The feathered war bonnet was not as common among them as among other Plains people. Skin caps with horns attached were often used instead; these were decorated with white weasel tails. Claws of grizzly bear made into a necklace were worn only by chiefs and distinguished men. They colored their faces with red clay over which they applied a glossy lead color paint.





The Cheyennes are an important Plains people of the Algonquian family, originally occupying a territory in Minnesota, between the Red River and the Mississippi. The French mentioned the Cheyennes as early as 1680 under the name of "Chaa", when some of them appeared at La Salle's fort on the Illinois River. This delegation invited the French to visit their country which they represented as full of beaver and other game. Their westward movement was due to pressure from the Sioux who were themselves retreating before the gunarmed Chippewas. The Cheyennes followed the Missouri River west to the Black Hills, where Lewis and Clark encountered them in 1804. By this time, having acquired horses, they had abandoned fixed villages, ceased farming and lost the art of making pottery. They had become buffalo hunters. On the Missouri, however, they still lived in earth covered log houses. They had a long alliance with the Arapahos, which is still unbroken. Their known history begins with Lewis and Clark in 1804. Constantly pressed further into the western Plains by the Sioux, they soon found themselves in collision with the Kiowas and Comanches, who claimed the country. In 1832, we find them in the vicinity of Bent's Fort in eastern Colorado. In 1849, the tribe suffered severely from cholera, with a loss of about two thirds of its members. From 1 8 6 0 to 1878, they were prominent in border warfare, acting in alliance with the Sioux in the north and the Kiowas and Comanches in the south. They suffered greatly at the hands of General Custer in the Massccre of the Washita, in Oklahoma (1868). They were allies of Sitting Bull in the war of 1876, and participated in the Battle of the Little Big Horn. Later they were to suffer defeat and finally found a home on reservations in Oklahoma and Montana. They now number about 4.000. The 1930 census lists 1.200 in Oklahoma and .1.408 in Montana. They were a typical Prairie people, living in tipis, hunting the buffalo, and fighting on horseback. In character, they were proud, ostentatious, brave to desperation, and had exceptionally high standards for women. The great tribal ceremony was the Sun Dance, a yearly ritual that belongs exclusively to the tribes of the Plains. They participated in the Ghost Dance religious uprising in 1890. Many are now practicing the Peyote cult. The Cheyennes did not ordinarily wear any head dress in good weather. For ceremonies, they used many kinds of decorations of feathers, hair and beads. After contact with the Whites, blankets took the place of their buffalo robes. Fringed shirts of deerskin or antelope were worn, and these were beautifully decorated with quills or beads. Leggings of deer or buffalo skins, later of cloth, were decorated. All clothing was discarded in battle. Women wore a dress made of two hides sewn together, and beaded knee length leggings. The Cheyenne moccasins had a hard sole, soft uppers with a flap reaching around the ankle. They were decorated with beads.




The Blackfeet or Siksikas were an important Algonquian confederacy of the southern plains and the foothills of the Rockies. They consisted of three tribes, Blackfoot, Blood and Piegan. Their language is so different from that of other Algonquins as to indicate that their separation from the main stock took place early. In spite of living in the mountains, they retain many characteristics of the Plains Indians. The Whites did not penetrate into their country until the '60s and '70s. They have therefore kept much of their original culture. Their tradition goes back to the time before they had horses. By 1800 they owned large herds of these animals, stolen from tribes further south. In character; they were restless, aggressive, and always in conflict with their Indian neighbours. They were at no time officially at war with the United States, but their general attitude was hostile. They professed an uncertain friendship with the Hudson's Bay Company men. So far as we have any knowledge, the Blackfeet have always been buffalo hunters, without permanent villages and without agriculture except for the cultivation of tobacco. Some 600 of them are known to have died of starvation in 1883-4 because of the destruction of the buffalo by the Whites. They suffered great losses from smallpox in 1838, 1 8 4 3 , 1858, and 1869, and were reduced from about 10.000, when first encountered, to 3.500 in 1930. They are tall, of splendid physique. They lived in tipis until recently. The tribe is noted for its love of beautiful costume, and they are perhaps the best accoutered Indians in the United States; natur- . ally, they wear their finery only on special occasions, or when serving as receptionists at Glacier National Park. The men wore buckskin






The Pawnees are a very interesting people who belong to the Caddo family. They probably got their name from "pariki" (horn) because of their peculiar manner of dressing the scalp lock so that it would stand erect and curve like a horn. The Pawnees, in their travels, reversed the general trend of east to west. Their movement was from south in a northeasterly direction until they finally settled on the Platte River in Nebraska. The Sioux found them already well entrenched there when they moved on the Plains. The earliest mention of the Pawnees is of the "Turk" who lured Coronado from New Mexico on to the Plains of Kansas in search of the golden hoards of Quivira in 1541. French traders were established among them before 1750. The Spaniards in New Mexico knew the Pawnees only too well, from their raids for horses. They tried for two hundred years to secure peaceful relations with them, without much success. With the Louisiana Purchase, the Pawnees territory passed to the control of the United States. The trail to the Southwest lay across their lands, but, through all the vicissitudes of the Indians of the 19th century, the Pawnees never made war against the United States or the American people. Under the greatest provocations, they were patiently waiting for the government to right their wrongs, while the Pawne scouts faithfully and courageously served the United States army during the frontier wars against the Indian people. The history

of the Pawnees is that of all other reservation Indians : gradual abandonment of ancient customs, and the relinquishment of their homes and lands under pressure of the Whites, until they lost all their holdings and were moved to Oklahoma, where they now live. In 1852, they numbered about 5.000. The population has dwindled to about 1.000. They have a remarkable and rich mythology, full of poetic fancy. T h e y practiced human sacrifice, the victims being lovely girls from their own tribe. Their religious ceremonials were concerned with heavently bodies and cosmic forces, especially the morning and evening stars, which represented the masculine and feminine elements. Their culture is matriarchial. They raised corn, pumpkins, and beans. Corn was sacred and was planted, cultivated and harvested with religious ceremonies. They wove cloth, made pottery and baskets. The Pawnee house was a large earth lodge, constructed according to an elaborate ritual. In early times, the Pawnee men shaved their heads except for a narrow ridge from forehead to scalp lock. Frequently they wore a turban or scarf. Not only beard but eyebrows were plucked. They seldom used tattooing, but face painting was common, and heraldic designs were often painted on their robes as well as on tipis and shields. Breech cloth and moccasins were the only essentials in men's clothing Leggings and robes were worn in cold weather, or for festive occasions. The women wore their hair in two braids at the back, the parting and the face being painted red. The old women used moccasins, leggings and a robe. Later a skirt and tunic were added



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North American Indian Costumes Vol. 1 (text)